33 BMW 1983 R100RS Install Drive Shaft

I removed the drive shaft before taking having it powder coated. You can see how I do that here:

Now that the swing arm is back from the powder coater, it’s time to install the drive shaft into the swing arm.

Powder Coated Swing Arm

Powder Coated Swing Arm

Parts

I decided to replace the torsion shock spring. The snap ring is a use once item, so I replace that also.

Part #                 Description                                                 Qty
26 11 1 237 189  SNAP RING-Drive Shaft 1
26 11 1 237 184  COIL SPRING 1

Tools

I use the Cycle Works tool for compressing the drive shaft spring so I can install the snap ring retaining collar and the snap ring. It’s the same tool I use to remove the drive shaft.

Cycle Works Drive Shaft Spring Compression Tool Components

Cycle Works Drive Shaft Spring Compression Tool Components

I use snap ring pliers. These allow me to reverse the action of the pliers when I squeese them: close the jaws or open them.

Snap Ring Pliers

Snap Ring Pliers

Video

Here is a video that summarizes the procedure shown in this document.

VIDEO: 1983 BMW R100RS Install Drive Shaft

Drive Shaft Parts

Starting in the 1979 model year (09/1978), the drive shaft design changed. It uses a spring to absorb sudden torsion shock loads caused by engine acceleration and deceleration. This provides a smoother ride and less stress on the universal joint and the drive shaft. The drive shaft parts are shown in the picture below.

Drive Shaft Parts

Drive Shaft Parts

  • A-Drive Shaft
  • B-Spring Retaining Collar
  • C-Spring
  • D-Yoke
  • E-Bell Coupling
  • F-Snap Ring Retaining Collar
  • G-Snap Ring
"B"-Drive Shaft Spring Collar

“B”-Drive Shaft Spring Collar

"B"-Drive Shaft Spring Collar

“B”-Drive Shaft Spring Collar

"C"-Drive Shaft Spring

“C”-Drive Shaft Spring

"C"-Drive Shaft Spring

“C”-Drive Shaft Spring

The new drive shaft spring measures 45 mm long.

New Spring-45 mm

New Spring-45 mm Long

"D"-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

“D”-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

"D"-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

“D”-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

"D"-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

“D”-Drive Shaft Yoke with Splines

"E"-Drive Bell Coupling Fits Rear Drive

“E”-Drive Bell Coupling Fits Rear Drive

"E"-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Has No Splines

“E”-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Has No Splines

"F"-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring Retaining Collar-Flat Side

“F”-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring Retaining Collar-Flat Side

"F"-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring Retaining Collar Has Ridge That Pushes On Snap Ring-Faces You When Installed in Bell Coupling

“F”-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring Retaining Collar Has Ridge That Pushes On Snap Ring-Faces You When Installed in Bell Coupling

"G"-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring

“G”-Drive Shaft Bell Housing Snap Ring

Assemble Drive Shaft in Swing Arm Tube

Before I install the drive shaft into the swing arm tube, I clean out the swing arm tube to remove any debris left by the powder coater. I flush the inside of the swing arm tube with hot water an then push paper towels through it a couple times with a long shank cleaning brush I have.

Cleaning Swing Arm Drive Shaft Tube

Cleaning Swing Arm Drive Shaft Tube

Grunge Inside Swing Arm Drive Shaft Tube

Grunge Inside Swing Arm Drive Shaft Tube

After I insert the drive shaft into the swing tube, I install the spring retaining collar followed by the spring, the yoke and then the bell housing. Here are pictures of the orientation of the parts on the drive shaft so you can see the order the are installed.

NOTE:
You can’t install the drive shaft with any of these parts installed, you have to install them after you insert the drive shaft into the swing arm tube. The pictures show you how they go onto the drive shaft after you insert it into the swing arm drive shaft tube.

Install Spring Collar

Install Spring Collar

Install Spring

Install Spring On Top of Spring Collar

Install Yoke

Install Yoke On Top of Spring-Align Yoke Splines with Drive Shaft Splines

Install Bell Housing

Install Bell Housing On Top of Yoke

All Parts Except Snap Ring Retaining Collar and Snap Ring Installed on Drive Shaft

All Parts Except Snap Ring Retaining Collar and Snap Ring Installed on Drive Shaft

Assemble Cycle Works Spring Compressor Tool

I show how to assemble the tool here:

I tightened the collar nuts six full turns to be sure I had plenty of clearance above the snap ring retaining collar to install the snap ring.

Install Snap Ring Retaining Collar and Snap Ring

I use snap ring pliers to expand the snap ring. There is little room to work inside the mouth of the swing arm tube so I place the snap ring toward the end of the fingers of the pliers so it will be easy to slide the ring off the pliers. I expand the ring just enough to get it over the lip of the drive shaft. Then I use a flat blade screw driver to push the snap ring off the fingers of the snap ring pliers over the drive shaft and then down into the groove in the shaft. It took me two attempts to get the snap ring in place.

NOTE:
I have heard from several people about how hard it is to install the snap ring. I decided to try this technique and I think it made installation of the snap ring easy.

Use Snap Ring Pliers To Expand The Snap Ring

Use Snap Ring Pliers To Expand The Snap Ring

Insert Snap Ring Over Splined End Of Drive Shaft

Insert Snap Ring Over Splined End Of Drive Shaft

Use Screw Driver To Push Snap Ring Over Drive Shaft End

Use Screw Driver To Push Snap Ring Over Drive Shaft End

I verify that the snap ring is seated in the groove visually and also by using a flat blade screw driver to rotate it in the groove.

Verify The Snap Ring Is Seated In The Groove In The Drive Shaft

Verify The Snap Ring Is Seated In The Groove In The Drive Shaft

I remove the pressure on the drive shaft spring by alternately loosening each coupling nut one turn at a time while I watch the snap ring retaining collar to be sure it captures the snap ring uniformly to lock it onto the drive shaft.

Verify The Snap Ring Retaining Collar Pushes The Snap Ring Evenly To Retain It In The Drive Shaft Groove

Verify The Snap Ring Retaining Collar Pushes The Snap Ring Evenly To Retain It In The Drive Shaft Groove

The drive shaft is installed inside the swing arm tube.

All Done-Rear Drive End

All Done-Rear Drive End

All Done-Transmission End

All Done-Transmission End

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